IHG® Hotels & Resorts Reveals Guests’ Growing Passion to Travel Better

1:07:34 PM | 3/26/2021

82% of people say it is important to choose a hotel brand that operates responsibly as IHG launches its 10-year plan to care for people, communities and the planet.

People are more mindful than ever about travelling responsibly following the COVID-19 pandemic, reveals a new global survey by IHG Hotels & Resorts. The research is commissioned as part of IHG’s launch of ‘Journey to Tomorrow’: a 10-year action plan comprising a series of far-reaching new commitments to make a positive difference and help shape the future of responsible travel.

60 per cent of the 9,000 adults surveyed across the US, UK, Germany, Greater China, the UAE and Australia agree that they want to be more environmentally and socially conscious on their travels. This is led by 69 per cent of younger travellers (aged 18 to 24) compared to just 48 per cent of 55s and over.

It appears travellers not only intend to do more for the planet and communities around them, they are willing to pay for it too. The research found that consumers will spend an average of 31 per cent more on accommodation they know operates responsibly – with 51 per cent happy to fork out more than 20 per cent extra a night.

Community first: Guests connecting with purpose

With the world travelling more locally – or not at all right now, it seems the pandemic has made consumers more mindful about preserving and connecting with the communities around them. More than half of respondents across the globe (57 per cent) say they care more about doing their bit for local communities and the planet while travelling now than they did 10 years ago. In fact, 46 per cent of people say they are more likely to be mindful about avoiding tourist activities that have a negative impact on the local environment and communities since the global pandemic.

86 per cent of people say it is important to get to know the local community when visiting somewhere new, with two thirds doing this by supporting local eateries, followed by shopping locally (64 per cent), speaking with the locals (61 per cent), and getting involved with local tours (48 per cent). A further 3 in 10 choose to stay with travel companies that offer local community programs. As for activities such as volunteering and restoration projects, young travellers aged 18-24 are nearly three times as likely to get involved when visiting another country, compared to those 55 and over.

Travelling better for a sustainable future  

“As we look to the future, the global response to Covid-19 reminded us what can be achieved when we come together and work towards the greater good. This has made us all more conscious than ever about caring for people, communities and planet. Journey to Tomorrow embodies IHG’s strengthened commitment to make sure we do what’s right, not just what’s needed, and we are determined to contribute towards positive social and economic change, to stand up for key issues such as diversity and inclusion and human rights, and to make more responsible environmental choices.”

Keith Barr, CEO, IHG Hotels & Resorts

The appetite for better, greener travel is ripe. An incredible 82 per cent of adults around the world say they are committed to taking their everyday sustainable habits with them when they travel, with using the correct waste and recycling disposal for different items taking the top spot as the number one habit.

And it seems sustainability doesn’t need to take a backseat on holidays. Hotels are a welcome spot to do better: the two most popular habits included re-using towels and walking short distances to explore the local area. And, when asked what people would avoid so they could be a more responsible traveller, 47 per cent of respondents said they would avoid leaving the air conditioning on when they leave the room.

B.H (Vietnam Business Forum)